Last winter's crazy weather still causing problems for Georgia's agriculture
OGLETHORPE, Ga. -- Last year was the fifth warmest winter on record for Georgia, which has caused some ongoing problems for the state's agricultural industry.
The warm temperatures failed to control populations of a bug called the white fly, which bites into the leaves of plants and leaves behind a sugary substance called honeydew.
That honeydew makes conditions ripe for different molds and fungi to grow on crops.
The white fly also transmits diseases among plants.
Those factors combined really harmed a lot of the fall vegetables this season, including tomatoes, green beans or snap beans and squash. That equals higher prices for all of that produce.
One vendor at the Macon State Farmer's Market said that the price for a box of Georgia tomatoes doubled from last year, bringing the cost to just under $30.
There are ways to control white flies, such as with yellow sticky traps, pesticides and some commercial growers have introduced natural ways of fighting them off such as with ladybugs.
However, growers are ultimately depending on a return to normal winter temperatures to control the white fly populations.